In the search for their first win ever against the Philadelphia Eagles, the New York Jets were able to stun the previously undefeated team. After the game, Jets coach Robert Saleh boasted about his team’s defense and its performance through the first six weeks of the season.
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Saleh Proud of Defense for Stifling Eagles
The Jets defense is a key reason they were able to get back to .500. The defensive-minded Saleh has seen his unit excel as they have taken on some of the best quarterbacks in the league in Josh Allen, Jalen Hurts, and Patrick Mahomes.
#Jets HC Robert Saleh on his defense:
“Through these first six weeks, we’ve played a gauntlet of quarterbacks; I know we haven’t gotten all wins, but we’ve embarrassed all of them.”
Jets D has faced Mahomes, Hurts, Josh Allen, etc.pic.twitter.com/XhYJUFtCDc
— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) October 15, 2023
“Through these first six weeks, we’ve played a gauntlet of quarterbacks; I know we haven’t gotten all wins, but we’ve embarrassed all of them,” Saleh said after the win against the Eagles. “Just really, really proud of the defense and its resolve … I thought our D-line was good in terms of keeping that kid in the pocket, he’s a handful, Hurts and their O-line, their receivers. I thought our guys battled all the way through.”
Saleh’s bold comment isn’t too far out of touch. Looking at the numbers, the Jets defense tends to stifle these top quarterbacks. Against the Jets, Allen threw three interceptions. Mahomes completed 18 of 30 pass attempts for 203 yards and two interceptions.
MORE: New York Jets Depth Chart
Most notably of all, Hurts completed 27 of 43 pass attempts for 279 yards, one touchdown, and three interceptions, and he was sacked twice as the Jets spoiled the Eagles’ perfect record. This was his first three-interception performance since 2021.
Additionally, the Jets were playing without their top two cornerbacks as Sauce Gardner and D.J. Reed were out with injuries.
“Unbelievable, you can’t give those guys enough credit,” Jets quarterback Zach Wilson said of the defense Sunday. “Especially some of the guys we pulled up with Sauce being out.”
The Jets forced four turnovers in the matchup, including an interception on a 3rd-and-9 with 1:50 left in the game as Philadelphia was holding on to a 14-12 lead.
Set up at a first-and-goal, running back Breece Hall was able to punch in a touchdown from eight yards out for the lead. With less than two minutes left to make something happen, the Jets’ defense once again stifled Hurts as he threw four consecutive incomplete passes and turned the ball over on downs.
The Jets’ season got off to a catastrophic start with the loss of Aaron Rodgers, but their defense and Saleh’s confidence in them may be able to continue to propel them to a successful season as they seek to continue to “embarrass” opposing offenses.